Fact Check: A “Chinese man” Li Ching-Yuen lived for 256 years or 197 years?

A story says he was born in 1677 and died in 1933 that would make him 256 years old, another says he was born in 1736 and that would make him 197 years old!

Internet has full of rumors and fake news. Many of them are extraordinary like this. Many stories attach a picture of an old Chinese man and attribute the name Li Ching-Yuen and say that he lived for over 250 years because of his inner calm and herbs. Even many websites published this exaggerate story without checking for facts, just for clickbait and advertising money from the websites. What’s the truth?

As of now, whatever the stories claims about Li Ching-Yuen isn’t proven anywhere. There are no documents revealed about his birth or his presence in 1800 or before. All stories seems like fairy tales and folk stories. The picture attached with the message or viral posts are true, which was taken in 1927.

The claims of his longer lifespan has been dismissed by gerontologists as a myth. The spread of myth began when a Chinese warlord General Yang Sen started spreading an unproven story with various imaginary timelines. It’s possible that Li Ching-Yuen has lived longer life than any human being (chances are low) and it could be true that he was living in mountains with complete peace of mind and he was depending on mountain herbs. Still, everything is unproven except his death in 1933.

As of now, the only confirmed oldest person lived on the earth is Jeanne Louis Calment who passed away in 1977 in France at the age of 122 years and 164 days. There are various claims from many part of the world about the people who lived longer than 122 years, but there are no substantial evidences to prove their age.

Jeanne Calment of France who lived for 122 years (confirmed by gerontologists).

Did you know that the “confirmed” oldest person lived on the earth – Jeanne Louis Calment – smoked cigarettes from the age of 21 (1896) to 117 (1992)? Yes it’s true! According to her relatives, she smoked not more than two cigarettes per day and it’s not known whether she inhaled or not!

There were some reports about the “256 year-old” Li Ching-Yuen with almost similar “unproven” information but with a twist! A colored photograph of an old person claimed to be him. How could a 1900ish camera can take such a detailed photograph and that too with focus on the face and blurred in the background?

According to the Gerontologists, it’s a photograph of a Chinese woman named Luo Meizheng who was claimed to be an oldest person lived on earth (127 years), but without any substantial documents to prove the claim.

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